Ratten in the gun?

Peter Keenan March 19, 2012, 12:23 am

Every year the press circle a coach and the one that could be under pressure in six or seven weeks' time is Brett Ratten.

Rodney Eade got circled last year along with Dean Bailey, it was cleanout time in the AFL as both got punted.

They've

had no wins in the pre-season and plenty of injuries including a few on
crutches in the medical room but Ratten's not worried, it all went to
plan according to him.

They planned for this, how to play and they
didn't deviate but privately he'd admit it's always good to win a few,
there's nothing better than a live kill.

Carlton had a pretty fair
year last year before copping a few injuries to major players as they
ran out of steam in the finish but a lot is expected.

Already they've thrown down the gauntlet and said a top-four finish is the only thing they will contemplate.

But
even in Round 1, what has been a comfortable launching pad into the
season against the despised Richmond is suddenly not looking so easy
after Damien Hardwick's team traveled pretty well in the pre-season.

No one can ever take pre-season form and say this is what we are, it's just too hard.

If anybody is to be sacked this year it will be Ratten.

I'm
not writing Carlton off yet, it's too early, but privately those
fanatical Blues supporters would be mumbling behind closed doors.

The
once great super club had a humbling seven or eight years before
playing finals the past three but could this be another one?

Congratulations to the Crows.

I'm still not sure if West Coast turned up to play or not but a NAB Cup grand final is always worth winning.

The
good thing about it is a rookie coach who they took a chance on won the
game with almost the same list that Neil Craig left him.

They played with a fair bit of enthusiasm and one thing I did notice is they seemed to be a bit bigger than last year.

Brenton Sanderson has brought with him the Geelong formula of making the players big and strong to break out of packs.

I've coached Sanderson at Collingwood and Geelong and he's got a fine football brain.

It will be interesting to see how far he can take this group.

I do know Craig will be looking on from Melbourne if they go well wondering what he did wrong.